What I learned in Zumba Class

That’s right you read it correctly!   As I shared in my last post I have been working out and getting my body back into shape.  Well one night I was on the elliptical doing my thing and saw this group of women began their Zumba class.  I of course dismissed it immediately, while I love Latino music I was pretty certain I could never make my body move like those ladies were.  Yet over the next couple of weeks I found myself drawn to watch them moving in sync to tunes and having a good time.

Within three weeks I mustarded enough courage and walked into the class; I found my way to what I thought was back of the class.  If you have ever been part of a Zumba class the group moves around the class a lot; so my little corner of security was quickly removed.  Man did I feel like a bull in a china cabinet and am pretty certain I looked like one too.  However, I got the best cardio I had gotten in ages and I liked the music.

After class one night a woman close to my age and in great shape came up to me and asked if she could share her story.  She pulled out a picture of this obese woman who looked nothing like her and said that was her two years ago.  She shared how she lost 180 pounds by doing Zumba and changing how she ate.  She told me just like me she couldn’t always keep up with the group but she learned to just keep moving even if she couldn’t do what everyone else did.  She also shared that for a solid six weeks every part of her body ached and hurt, but she kept coming back and trying.

Lesson one, it is important to share your story with others who are struggling but desiring to enter into health.

Lesson two, commit to the process no matter how hard it seems.

I have often relied on those words of encouragement, to keep pushing forward in my quest for health and fitness.  I had some remaining results of the car accident and subsequent head injury that made the class challenging.  I couldn’t turn around in circles as is often part of the routine, but I would hear those “words just keep moving”. So I learnt to adapt to routine and keep moving in some similar form.  Secondly, and much more embarrassing was the dyslexic messages my brain sent to go to the left when others were going right.   In spite of my challenges these women soon embraced me as one of their own. Although, I felt very other than the rest of the women.  They moved well like girls and they laughed and chit chatted like women often do.  Yet I was strangely drawn to this group of women who knew nothing about my sexual identity and surrounding issues.

Lesson three, it’s OK to not be able to do what everyone else is doing find a way that works for you.

Lesson four, acceptance and encouragement are ways to express value to others.

The biggest lesson was yet to come.  As I started to move in sync with this group my confidence grew and so did my ability.  The initial pain subsided and I was able to move more freely.  I found myself looking at the graceful way these  women flowed and much to my surprise I found myself watching them move and longing to move like they did.

That’s a big deal I have never been one of the girls and well girls seem to learn from and encourage each other on all things girly.  I instead was off playing with the boys and trying to competing to conquer the world. I also carried myself in masculine manner and thought nothing of it.  So, with every Zumba class I was secretly noting how to be more like one of the girls.  Yes that’s right at 51 I started embracing my physical womanhood and having fun with the girls in a safe and healthy way.

This became very evident to me one day as one of my friends joined me for the class and in the middle of “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” busts out with Barney the dinosaur moves that made me laugh and totally lose where we were in class.  I cherish that moment, because, there I was just one of the girls and having a blast.  Thanks, Teresa AKA Lightening, and Momma Swag, you  have taught me that girls can have fun and what a true friend is.  There have been more challenging moments like; the instructor breaking out belly dancing scarves for us to tie around our waists; ugh in room of eight women I was forced to give into peer pressure. It was a funny moment when it was all over, although I still cringe thinking about it.

Yeah you guessed it I felt like a fool and oh and not to worry I don’t sport around in pink chiffon and lace dresses or skirts.  Paint my nails or try to walk in heels and fall flat on my face.  I am however much more accepting of my feminine side.   At the same time all this was taking place, God was working on my rejection self-loathing of being born a girl.  The day of my 52 birthday God breathed into my spirit that He had created me to be a woman intentionally and on purpose. I wept that day it was the first time I felt accepted and valued as a woman.

The final outcome, Zumba has been a tool that God has used to develop my femininity and come to a place of comfort among other women.  I am still working on my interactions with women and discovering my own personal expression as a woman but I am on my way.

Look forward to your comments as my journey continues,


~ by hopespassage on August 31, 2012.

4 Responses to “What I learned in Zumba Class”

  1. Really enjoyed reading this. Makes me think. Thanks

  2. thank you, you have gained a new fan, these texts you post here are very useful to me. lista de email lista de email lista de email lista de email lista de email

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